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Saints hire Ryan as defensive coordinator

The SportsXchange

The New Orleans Saints announced Saturday that they hired Rob Ryan as their defensive coordinator.

Ryan was interviewed on Friday. He replaces Steve Spagnuolo, who was fired after one season. Ryan was let go by the Dallas Cowboys after the season.

"We have experience in preparing and playing against his defenses, and they've always been challenging in terms of the different looks and pressures that they feature," coach Sean Payton said in a statement. "We've had the chance to visit with each other and talk about our visions for our team, and I'm excited about moving forward as we prepare for the 2013 season."

The Saints allowed an average of more than 440 yards per game, worse than any team in the history of the NFL. The Cowboys were 19th in the league in yards allowed in 2012.

"I am excited and thrilled to be joining the New Orleans Saints," Ryan said in a statement. "I have had the opportunity to get to know Sean Payton and his staff a bit better recently, and I am excited about joining the team. I have a ton of respect for (owner) Mr. (Tom) Benson, (general manager) Mickey (Loomis) and the organization, and I'm ready to get to work on all facets of the game. This is a great opportunity, and we're getting started right away."

Ryan was also strongly considered for the St. Louis Rams defensive coordinator job, which is still unfilled.

It took Ryan more than a month to find a job after saying it would take him "like five minutes" after he was fired in Dallas.

Payton also added Stan Kwan as an assistant special teams coach. Kwan has been an assistant in the NFL for 23 years. He spent the last three as a special teams assistant with the Buffalo Bills.
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